About

The Resiliency Foundation was founded on the belief that every individual possesses the resilience to overcome insurmountable odds. It is our mission to help victims and survivors of child marriage, human trafficking, and sexual abuse become survivors. In other words, we are committed to ending modern slavery and exploitation.

In 2019, The Resiliency Foundation was founded as a direct service provider with a focus on mental health and overcoming trauma associated with child marriage, human trafficking, and sexual abuse. Our founder, Genevieve Meyer, is a survivor of child marriage and has years of experience working with healthcare providers, offering a unique perspective and skillset to the movement. However, as the work began and Genevieve shared her story, it became evident that she and the foundation could have a greater impact working to educate the general public on the issues and change legislation that fails to protect the vulnerable. Working closely with Tahirih Justice Center and other partner agencies, we help draft policy and then successfully lobbied the Indiana State Legislature to pass a minimum marriage for the state.

This level of success is uncommon in the first year of an organization’s existence and we plan to continue leveraging this momentum to:

  • Focus on and provide leadership on the issue of domestic child marriage while setting policy guidelines for legislators at all levels of government including a minimum marriage age of 18 or 17 with judicial review.
  • Collect survivor stories and data to guide our advocacy efforts and meet the needs of the people most effected.
  • Create trainings and toolkits in order to reach a broader audience on the issues of child marriage and exploitation and what can be done.
  • Establish a Midwest Coalition to End Child Marriage to continue the mission of the foundation, build capacity through organizations, agencies, and individuals working toward the same goals, and strategically target policymakers to create lasting legislative change.

26 comments

    1. I live in New York , only NJ and Delaware are 18. I’m sorry but 1 parent gives a permission slip, this is not gym class folks. Maybe centuries ago it was needed for a man to carry a namesake, but now it’s not, it’s a way to hide a pedophilia in current times. It’s the same as property, a dowry and so on. I am contacting my congressman and stating NY must go to 18. Also if a parent is unstable, mentally and or physically they nay not allow them to give permission. They must also be their physically not a paper that can be forged. I am just angered by this and I thankyou for sharing this . We help by not allowing this anymore. Thankyou joan

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  1. There needs to be assistance in every state. Please join organizations working on changing the laws such as Tahirah Center for justice in DC. You may just be called on for posting updates. Everyone can help. Love this work from resiliency foundation. I would love to participate in New Mexico.

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    1. Thank you Katherine. We absolutely work with Tahirih! As well as many national and international organizations. I just focus here in IN because sadly we can’t fix everything in one swoop. But we absolutely answer the call to work together on a national level.

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  2. I was married at 17 with the assistance of my biological father. He had no legal guardianship of me and I felt like marriage was my only escape from my abusive parents. It has altered my course and I struggle still, over 20 years later to understand how this could happen when all I have ever done is try to succeed.

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    1. Hi Mindy, I’m sorry that this happened to you. It makes me sad that marriage out of a abusive homelife is so acceptable to many. So often women go from abusive home to abusive marriages because they are conditioned to it. I always feel like I’m a decade behind 😦
      I have also known what it’s like to feel like you just can’t get any traction and then have that feeling of unease when things have been going well for too long.
      Take care and keep in touch.
      -Genevieve

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  3. Your courage and commitment will touch many lives. I have treated many women and men who when sexually abused as children developed eating disorders as well as other life-threatening physical and mental health issues.
    Any way I can contribute to your efforts, I would be happy to help. There is hope and recovery for each of them.
    Donna Frydman LMHC
    Florida

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    1. Hi Donna, thank you for taking the time to comment and thank you for treating these hard cases. It’s often a victim is in a place to get help and there just isn’t any. It’s very hard to treat these cases and sometimes you need a break or can’t do it anymore. Email me and let’s see how we can collaborate.

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  4. I am very interested in your work and your story.
    In 1960 I was forced into a marriage when I was 13.My mother put a maternity dress on me and lied to the Justice of the Peace and said I was 16 and pregnant. I had a very hard life,expecting fifth child at 19.Still deal with an anxiety disorder

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    1. Wow Zona! Thank you for sharing. I don’t recall providing a birth certificate or anything proving my age. I’m going to look into this and see if lying about a child ages is possibly still happening.
      Im sorry for what you went through. Feel free to email me any time you like.
      -Genevieve

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  5. The states that sanction these marriages and the parents who allow it are 100% complicit in placing these young children in predatory and dangerous situations. These are not marriages in the purest form. They only benefit the oppressors! No child pregnant or not should be forced to make a decision to marry or just be coerced and manipulated in such a way. It’s time to get these laws changed. Shame on any state lawmaker who doesn’t introduce a bill to change the laws or vote for bills to change the laws. And shame on any voter who votes to leave the laws as they are now in some states.
    My admiration for women who have overcome this oppression and may you inspire other women. They need your strength and support!

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  6. I, like Donna, am a Licensed Mental Health Counselor (LMHC) in Florida and have worked with trauma victims/survivors/thrives for many years. I am currently licensed in Florida (6 years) and would love to help your organization in any way I can. I worked hard to relicense from another state and am particular about volunteering my time/expertise but would very much like to do so for the Resiliency Foundation.
    Thank you for your courage and strength.

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  7. First , I am so sorry you had to go through this as a child. I had never imagined this situation existed in the United States, very eye opening. Thank you for sharing your story.

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  8. This could have been my personal story with a few minor changes. My mom and Ex husband convinced me to marry him because I was 14 pregnant and wouldn’t go to school and my mom was being threatened with jail, he was 20 and facing felony sexual charges. So @15 I was miserably married.

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  9. Hi,

    You don’t know me but I think our interests align. As a survivor of childhood sexual abuse by three adult men before I was 16, I would like to remove the statute of limitations for child sexual abuse nationwide. Stopping underage marriages is important but also what about those who have already been forced into these arrangements and have no way to hold their abusers liable. Those like me.

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      1. Thanks for your response. Reading between the lines here. Instead of alignment with an organization, I should lead the fight for justice, if not for myself then those who follow. I’ve reached out to the representative for my district. This should be nationwide. Heinous crimes deserve prosecution no matter when the authorities finally decide to listen. Thanks!?!

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